If you believe the statistics literally everyone, everywhere deals with infidelity. Cheating has unfortunately become one of the most common problems in relationships. I’ve asked myself time and time again, what makes people cheat? What would make ME cheat? Does every one man or woman have the potential to be unfaithful? Is cheating like a contagious disease that’s infected and spread to all of us? Or is cheating an individual decision, a lifestyle or a way of living? Are we taught to cheat? Is it something we learn?
In my life, I grew up in a home where cheating was “NORMAL” if I can use that word. I don’t know when exactly I knew but for as long as I can remember I’ve known that my Dad kept other women on the side. I’m not sure if he just repeated the brokenness he was raised in…or if he just decided that his libido would make all of his relationship decisions. My Dad was what I call a serial cheater. He owned a West Indian Grocery Store in upstate New York when I was growing up. We lived in Connecticut, so he’d travel daily between the business and home. And the times when he was too tired to drive, he’d just sleep in a storage area inside the grocery store….he just wouldn’t necessarily sleep there alone.
One time my Mom went to the store unannounced to bring him some needed store supplies. She had my baby brother in her arms as she knocked on the back door of the grocery store. She heard movement inside but when my Dad took way too long to answer, she began walking around to the front of the store. As she made her way to the front—which was glass by the way—my Father was trying to push the other woman out the front door! There’s my Mom with groceries in one arm and my baby brother in the other, staring at the other woman and my Dad who’d just been CAUGHT cheating! It got pretty ugly that time, knives might have been wielded –but that didn’t end the marriage. Feelings were stuffed, behavior didn’t change and life kindof went on. My Mom stayed and stayed and stayed until after 17 years, she left. Maybe 17 years of stuffing feelings, explanations that failed and the sheer exhaustion of being in an unfaithful marriage finally took its toll.
Cheating is a pretty straight forward deal when you think about it. You’re committed to one person and you decide you want someone else too. But why? What’s in us that pushes us to cheat? Is it about sex? Is it about needs? Is it because our spouse isn’t fulfilling our wants? Or is it because our co-worker listens when our husband won’t and late night sexting is more stimulating than our spouse who’s lying in bed beside us.
I’ve talked about this subject over the years hundreds, maybe even thousands of times. I’ve listened counseled, cried and sat with people in pain. And I know that cheating is much more and much deeper than the headlines that we read. The elaborate scheming it takes to cheat is unbelievable…Maria Shriver and Arnold Schwarzenegger to mind. He not only cheated but his mistress lived with them as the housekeeper and he had a child with her! All the while Maria raised her kids, slept with him every night and they did life together. Infidelity is deep.
Maybe you’re in an affair right now, or you’re thinking about crossing that line. Maybe you’ve had an affair and it’s eating away at you and you don’t know how to tell your spouse. Maybe you’ve been cheated on, betrayed and you’re mad as hell and don’t know if you can ever get over it. Well tonight, this show is for you and for me…to help us talk about cheating in our relationships, why we cheat and most importantly if cheating happens, deciding if you stay or do you go?
It’s time that we push past the headlines and gossip. It’s time that we stop talking about cheating out there and start looking at ourselves and our own capacity to cheat. How are you ensuring you won’t let a casual relationship turn into something more? We live in a social media society these days. And with the advent of texting, Facebook, and email, it’s made it a TON easier to find people, connect with people and have constant conversation off the radar. It’s also added a whole new dimension to the age-old dilemma of cheating. Is it cheating when you message an old girl or boy “friend” and your partner doesn’t know?
Today I want to take the masks off and get real. As your chief empowerment officer for MONTHS on this show I’ve shared my story and challenged you to think, reveal and share your lives with me. I want to start a REAL conversation right now about cheating in our relationships. My goal is simple: look in the mirror and discover why we cheat and what we we can each do if we are faced with infidelity. What do you think constitutes cheating in a relationship? If an affair happens, should the relationship automatically end?
If you’re daring, tell me why YOU cheat. If you’ve been cheated on, did you stay or did you go? Why? Let’s take the lid off this subject and find healing, reasons and empowerment for our relationships!
Interestingly enough, my Dad told me before he died in a very vulnerable moment that he cheated all those years with all those women because my mother “let him.” Does a spouse “allow” cheating to happen or are we as individuals responsible for our own actions? Be sure to leave your comments below!
TWO powerhouse women are on this show : AIYANA MA’AT a certified marriage and relationship educator and TV’s ‘Divorce Court’ JUDGE LYNN TOLER these ladies are bringing it real in this show! LISTEN HERE
I am your chief empowerment officer JENNIFER KEITT and this is THE JENNIFER KEITT SHOW on KISS 104, Atlanta’s R&B!
The topic today: CRAZY FUNERALS! Yeah, you heard me, CRAZY FUNERALS!
Now what is a crazy funeral, you might ask? Well it’s like one that I attended. A close family member died and I was one of the speakers in the funeral.
Ask me why I had to ask one of my other relatives WHO the person was that was listed on the program—because the name that I knew this family member as—WAS NOT the name on the program. Now mind you I GREW UP WITH THIS MAN!! And then, ask me why in one of the front row sections did a young man sit down in the midst of my family—who NO ONE had ever seen? I noticed that all of my relatives started whispering, pointing and looking dumfounded about who this young man was! And then I found myself moments later having to introduce another SON that we nothing about!
What in the world!
So at the get together after the funeral, we spent HOURS trying to figure out who the man was that we just buried!! It was CRAZY! And mind you, crazy funerals happen ALL the time. The family drama, the money fights, the folks who show up at funerals that had secrets lives with the decedent.
Well o.k. here’s some more crazy. At my Father’s funeral, my Uncle sat in the front row, LITERALLY killing me with his eyes because he was FURIOUS with me for what he thought I should have done for my Dad. I remember getting through my remarks with daggers coming at me a mile a minute…from many in the audience, because my Father’s side of the family was and still is a difficult part of my life. For example, as my Father was literally on his death-bed in the hospital I had to attend the “brothers and sister” conversation that we had in the middle of a mall with my father’s other son and my brothers and me, awkward to say the least! We don’t speak to each other! Then there was my father’s youngest daughter who was at the funeral trying to find her place in this mess…and of course there was the tension between me and my father’s other wife and his family members.
It was CRAZY!
Ladies, and Gentlemen CRAZY FUNERALS happen all the time and they happen because we fail to have the important conversations with ourselves and our loved ones. So, you know me, I’ve decided it’s time to start today—with this post! In my 26 years in radio broadcasting I have NEVER discussed funerals. I want families to be whole, to be well—to share their stories and to NOT be drama-ridden OR HAVE CRAZY FUNERALS! That’s why I am talking about it with you.
My phone lines are open—I want to hear your CRAZY FUNERAL stories! You’ve got ‘em, you’ve either been to one, know of one, OR are anticipating one with maybe one of your loved ones! Call me now, 404-906-7720 to tell me your story. I bet you have NEVER been asked by a talk show host to share your CRAZY FUNERAL STORIES!!! First time for everything! Call me 404-906-7720.
The first step that we can take in eliminating CRAZY FUNERALS is to have important conversation with ourselves. As morbid as this may sound, I’ve talked to me about how I envision my death. And my family already knows. You stop any of my children or my husband and ask them what does your mother and wife want when she’s buried and they can tell you—NO open casket, NO long funeral, NO long speeches and NO sobbing or tears. I want my picture looking FABULOUS and I want for those attending to CELEBRATE my life with a party. Plus, I’ve taken all the steps to have my affairs in order—they know about the life insurance policies, where the important documents are, they know about the checking, savings, retirement accounts—I keep my life in order. And I want you to too.
I wish I could say the same about my close family members—I am unfortunately, anticipating some CRAZY FUNERALS so that’s why this show is just as important for me as it is for you. We can learn together how to begin to get our lives in order and have the IMPORTANT conversations with our loved ones. I am your CHIEF EMPOWERMENT OFFICER, Jennifer Keitt and I encourage you to listen to this INCREDIBLE SHOW. (CLICK HERE) The stories we heard…unbelievable! And the advice given…invaluable!! The Jennifer Keitt Show is on KISS 104, Atlanta’s R&B, every Sunday 7 – 8 pm ET. Be sure to visit my website at www.jenniferkeitt.com to stay connected.
I am having a ball bringing you my unique ‘talktainment’ every week! Be sure to help me spread the word! Tell your friends and family to listen to my show Sundays from 7 -8 pm on KISS 104 in Atlanta or live online at http://www.kiss1041fm.com.
Boy do I have juicy conversation for you today! Our conversation today is about the NOT TALKED ABOUT THINGS in marriage. We are going to MARRIAGE SCHOOL ladies and gentlemen and I’d like to start this way…
As they swirled around the dance floor, everyone could see that the Prince and Cinderella were falling in love. He moved heaven and earth to find his Princess after that magical evening. The shoe fit, he married her and swept her away into his castle where they lived HAPPILY EVER AFTER!
Or is it?
If only it were that simple, right? If only we fell on love on the dance floor! If only ladies were really Princesses, and men were Princess then all of our troubles in marriage would be solved, you think?
Ok, I can admit it. I had a fairytale notion about marriage. I thought that marriage was an answer, the answer to my loneliness, my self-esteem issues, my money concerns and I definitely thought it answered my sex needs. I can admit it, I thought marriage was a magic pill that you swallowed that instantly made you happy and live HAPPILY EVER AFTER.
Well almost 26 years later, while I NOW know I did marry my Prince, BOTH he and I were some ugly TOADS along the way! My husband Tony and I jumped right in after dating straight to “living together.” We signed leases together, he was working and I was in college. And not only did we co-mingled our bodies and emotions, but co-mingled our lives. We did what felt right at that time. Eventually we did get married—two weeks after I graduated college—and then we began to attempt to become one all over again as a married couple.
Well it worked, EVENTUALLY, but boy if I could have had some help along the way, how much LESS difficult things would have been. I think Tony and I have been through almost everything that we’re going to discuss. I’m calling this MARRIAGE SCHOOL—the NOT TAUGHT subjects in marriage!
No one taught me anything about living together. All I heard was what the old-folks used to say–NO SHACKING! I never fooled myself into thinking Tony and I were really “married” when we weren’t but honestly both of our lives were COMPLETELY intertwined—and if one of us just walked away—the other person would have had to try to untangle the mess. With new statistics being released JUST THIS WEEK from the CDC stating that 1 IN 4 BABIES ARE BEING BORN TO UNWED COUPLES LIVING TOGETHER, I thought we should go to school on this subject tonight.
Well what about sex—or should I say HAVING NO SEX—once you get married. I bought into what “they” said about having all the sex you want—kind of on-demand—once you got married. Of course YOU GOT MARRIED TO HAVE SEX! But then you don’t! What’s up with that? Tony and I have hit our dry spots in this area too—and so I knew we have to go to school on HOW TO HAVE SEX!
Now I can say I haven’t dealt with this next area but many, many couples have faced or are facing INFIDELITY. But hold up, today’s MARRIAGE SCHOOL lesson is on being married but on the DOWN LOW! According to one of my guest EXPERTS …PLENTY—with a capital P—of average-Joe, Black guys, here in Atlanta are messing around with other MEN while being married to women!! I can’t wait to hear more!!
Whew…marriage is no joke!
And we’re GOING TO MARRIAGE SCHOOL for the subjects NOT BEING TAUGHT OR TALKED ABOUT in marriage!
If you’re single, listen to get schooled. If you’re married, LISTEN and TAKE NOTES! If your relationship status on Facebook says IT’S COMPLICATED, you know you better keep it locked here AND EVERYONE call in with your thoughts, questions or comments on MARRIAGE—the NOT taught subjects! My private hotline number is 404-906-7720, please leave your comments, questions and thoughts anonymously.
The Jennifer Keitt Show relationship contributor, DR. RONN ELMORE says that marriage is what he calls AN OUTRAGEOUS COMMITMENT because it’s the ONLY commitment that we make until we die! You’ve got to get in on this conversation! Call my private Show hotline number 404-906-7720 to leave your questions, thoughts and comments anonymously.
I am Jennifer Keitt, your Chief Empowerment Officer, and this is our MARRIAGE SCHOOL show, the NOT TAUGHT or TALKED ABOUT TOPICS in marriage. LISTEN RIGHT NOW by clicking this link and be sure to call my private show hotline number with your anonymous questions, thoughts and comments on the show: 404-906-7720.
The Jennifer Keitt Show airs weekly, 7 -8 pm Sundays on KISS 104, Atlanta’s R&B.
C’mon, what’s really the fascination with William and Kate getting married? Now, I have to admit like everyone else, I am waiting with bated breath to see what Kate’s dress is going to look like on Friday as she walks down the aisle of Westminster Abby. But I had to ask myself, why do I really care? The answer, for me, was simple. I, like most of the world, LOVE weddings—especially ROYAL WEDDINGS! I think “surely with a start like that it’s bound to work!” (Don’t we kind of look at marriages today like we’re looking at the betting odds in Vegas?!) But I am hoping, wishing, praying even that Will and Kate will beat the divorce odds (that are in his own family) and will conquer the beast of marriage and I am hoping that they truly will live, “happily ever after…”
Will and Kate’s impending nuptials have me going into my memory vault to my own marriage archives and pulling off of those dusty shelves my story of the nervous, excited, bubbly thoughts, feelings, hopes and desires that I had 48 hours before my big day, 25 years ago. Looking back I honestly didn’t have a clue (no more than Kate and William have)! I don’t care how long you’ve dated, how much you think you know before you say I do, YOU DON’T until you transition from the wedding to being married.
I’ve scanned the volumes of history my marriage to Tony has produced and I want to say to Will and Kate and to anyone who wants to turn a “Royal Wedding” into a “Real Marriage” use these simple strategies to help in the process:
1. LISTEN INWARD BEFORE JUDGING OUTWARD
Be intentional about listening to what’s really going on inside YOU first before judging what your spouse is doing or saying! When I learned to ask myself, “Why are you upset that he’s late?” BEFORE I jumped on Tony for being late, I learned a lot (about myself of course but also about how to diffuse arguments or disagreements BEFORE they got started). My prayer for Will and Kate is that they too will be quick to listen to what’s going on inside their own hearts and heads before they judge one another. I hope the future King and Queen learn quickly how to correct, judge and adjust their own hearts first BEFORE they judge the other person. After many years of practicing this principle, life became so much easier with Tony, because I figured out, if I figured out what was going on with me, I didn’t need to “fix” what I felt was wrong with him!
2. DEVELOP AN ELASTIC MIND
An elastic mind is one that stretches far and wide to embrace who our spouse is becoming rather than being rigid in our expectation that they will stay the same. I woke up one day after 20 or so years of marriage and looked at Tony and realized he’s NOT the man I married all those years earlier. He’d changed! A new man had invaded his body—complete with a different perspective, a different take on life and different thoughts, ideas and behaviors.
And I loved it.
You see men and women DON’T stay the same (or at least they shouldn’t). And after the royal wedding day is finished and the cake crumbs are swept away, the music fades and the wedding dress is packed away, you and I and Will and Kate will have to realize that humans aren’t designed to stay the same. The man or woman you marry today will inevitably want to expand, and explore different careers, different hobbies, different educational achievements; they will want to grow. And our minds MUST become elastic enough to stretch with our mates newness and becoming! I hope Will and Kate especially get this, so that as they grow into Monarchs… they will allow the other person to become who they’re destined to be without hesitation.
3. BUILD LIFE TOGETHER AS BFF’S NOT AS BUSINESS PARTNERS
We can ‘fire’ our business partners. We’re not likely to fire our BFF (best-friend-forever) . Best friends are there, always. Best friends are the go-to person. They are the one you share “firsts” with…monumental events, changes in your life—they are the ones who get the phone call first, the 411, the scoop. They are the one we can’t wait to see, can’t wait to be with, can’t wait to “tell, share or laugh with.” BFF’s are the glue that holds our lives together and it’s my feeling that this person can and should be your spouse. Over the years, I can honestly say that Tony has become mine and I his, and I hope that Will and Kate will keep BFF status reserved for one another.
I hope that in the midst of the incredible ‘fish-bowl’ life that the royal couple are embarking on that they will (1) listen to their own hearts first, before judging the other person; (2) they will develop elastic minds capable of expanding to where their partner is growing and (3) that they will build their lives as BFF’s instead of business partners.
This strategy just may help turn this ROYAL WEDDING into a REAL MARRIAGE that lasts for a very long time.